Does economic uncertainty affect back to school shopping?

Kai Ryssdal Aug 10, 2016
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Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Does economic uncertainty affect back to school shopping?

Kai Ryssdal Aug 10, 2016
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
Share Now on:
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August is just about halfway through, which means the time has come for a celebrated tradition: back to school shopping. Parents and kids alike are descending on America’s malls in search of fall fashions, school supplies, and maybe even the occasional Pokemon.

Alana Ferko is the manager of the Butte Plaza Mall in Butte, Montana, and spoke to Marketplace about back to school shopping trends in her mall.

On how she tracks store’s performances:

The indicators are: check out the shoppers, especially if they have more than one shopping bag. I see that quite often my department store, my Herberger’s department store is a big draw. When I go out into the mall, I know that 50 percent of the people that I’m counting have a Herberger’s shopping bag.

On how economic uncertainty due to the election season has factored in:

I will say that people are being conservative right now but you definitely have to shop for back to school. But I don’t know about the other purchasing. I’m gonna say myself, I know I am being a little reserved.

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